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UFC London: Gunnar Nelson returns, fights Claudio Silva on March 19

UFC Fight Night: Weigh-ins Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

The UFC London fight card is filling up — fast.

Fresh on the heels of today’s announcement that Dan Hooker would be returning to featherweight to battle Arnold Allen (details here) comes word that Gunnar Nelson, sidelined since late 2019 due to injury, will be making his 170-pound comeback opposite Brazilian bruiser Claudio Silva at O2 Arena on March 19.

That’s according to by MMA journalist Alfredo Zullino.

Nelson (17-5-1) was expected to become the next big thing at 170 pounds, racking up four straight wins after making his Octagon debut in late 2012. Unfortunately for “Gunni” fans, the grappling phenom and karate black belt fell into a slump, putting together a below average record of 4-5 over the next few years.

And losses to top contenders like Gilbert Burns and Leon Edwards did him zero favors.

Like Nelson before him, Silva (14-3) put the division on notice by capturing victories in his first five fights under the UFC banner, then lost all of his momentum by posting consecutive losses to the likes of James Krause and Court McGee. “Hannibal” is six years older than his Icelandic opponent at 39 and could be looking at his final run for UFC.

UFC London will be headlined by the heavyweight showdown between Alexander Volkov and Tom Aspinall. Elsewhere on the card, Jake Hadley collides with Allan Nascimento at 125 pounds, while Paddy Pimblett makes his lightweight return against Rodrigo Vargas.

Stay tuned for more UFC London fight card announcements in the coming days.

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